Hundreds of employees laid off at NetEnt
After its acquisition by industry giant Evolution Gaming, a gaming company in Malta has begun cutting jobs and has shut down its live casino studio in Qormi. On Tuesday morning, NetEnt employees were sent home and were told to expect an email from their employer providing further instructions. The company refused to state confirm the exact number of its Malta workforce that would be rendered unwanted, however Times of Malta was told that “a few hundred” of NetEnt’s employees will be losing their jobs as part of the deal.
A special government helpline has been set up to help the staff whose jobs have been cut merely a couple of weeks before Christmas. NetEnt currently employs about 1,000 employees across the globe.
Barely three months ago, NetEnt announced its expansion of the Qormi studio, with new blackjack tables, stating the cause as heightened demand. Nonetheless, industry sources claimed that the redundancies had always been expected, for the most part, as part of the takeover. Evolution Gaming submitted its all-share bid to acquire NetEnt in June, valuing the company at around €2billion.
Responding to questions, a spokesman for Evolution Gaming said that its Qormi-based studio would be shut down and so “the people working directly with this product are at risk of redundancy.”
The Ministry of Economy said that it was discussing the identification of alternative jobs for employees that would be affected by the takeover. It said, in its statement, that the acquisition had “led to the closure of some business lines in Malta and elsewhere. The ministry encouraged employees to register for employment through JobsPlus and also set up a dedicated helpline on 22201251 to assist those affected.
It also noted: “Whilst noting the strong commitment by Evolution Gaming to its Malta operation, the Government, through the Ministry for the Economy and Industry, has immediately started discussions with the relevant entities to facilitate the smooth transition of employees who maybe at risk of being laid off as a result of this restructuring. Further arrangements have also been done for JobsPlus to offer a purposely set-up job matchmaking support service to the affected persons.”